clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Jason Kidd, the greatest Net, retires from the game he dominated

New, comments
Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Jason Kidd, the greatest Net of all-time and one of the greatest NBA players of all time, has announced his retirement after 19 years. Kidd, who holds a shelf-full of NBA and Nets records, revealed his decision Monday morning.

"I think it is the right time," Kidd told ESPN NewYork. "When you think about 19 years, it has been a heckuva ride. Physically, I want to be able to participate in activities with my kids so it has taken a toll. It is time to move on and think about maybe coaching or doing some broadcasting."

Kidd joined the Nets in 2001 in a trade for Stephon Marbury, four years his junior. At the time, he has seen as damaged goods. In the season before the trade, Kidd had been arrested in a domestic assault case brought by his then-wife, Joumanna. His teams had reached the second round only once ... and he had been injured for that run.

On arriving, Kidd did two things: he publicly said that that the team would win 42 games, up from 26 the year before. Privately, he told his teammates, "the losing is over," and promised success if they followed. In his first few practices, he asked each of his teammates where they wanted the ball ... and he delivered it. Then, in one of the league's most remarkable turnarounds, the Nets exceeded his predictions, winning 52 games and taking the team to the NBA Finals, first in 2002, again in 2003..

Of his trademark triple doubles, 61 of his 107 were with the Nets. The 107 triples are third all-time to Magic Johnson and Oscar Robertson. He is is the only player in NBA history with 15,000 points, 10,000 assists and 7,000 rebounds. He finished second all-time in assists; second all-time in steals, third all-time in three-pointers. Kidd was a remarkable 28-0 in international play for Team USA, winning the Olympic gold medal in Sydney in 2000 and in 2008 in Beijing.

Although he won his only NBA championship with the Mavericks after a contentious final year with the Nets and retired with the Knicks, his greatest years were with the Nets, leading them to the playoffs every one of seven seasons he played with New Jersey. The Nets didn't reach the playoffs in the three years before he arrived, nor in the five years after he left.

Perhaps the greatest tribute comes from his now teenaged son, T.J. Kidd.

"As I reflect," Kidd said. "I look back fondly at every season & thank each & every one of my teammates & coaches that joined me on the court," Kidd told Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN, once the Nets beat writer at the Daily News. Kidd said he might want to join the coaching ranks or get behind a mic as a broadcaster.